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Friday, September 4, 2009

Fire and Ice by J. A. Jance

J. A. Jance has two separate series with terrific protagonists: Joanna Brady and J. P. Beaumont. Each of them has had a successful series on their own and Fire and Ice is the 2nd book featuring them together. Beaumont is in Seattle and works for a special homicide unit under the direction of the State Attorney General, Brady is the sheriff for Cochise County Arizona.
What brings them together this time is a series of unsolved murders in Washington state. The connection is made to a Mexican mafia group which has ties in Arizona and to a murder at an ATV park.
I really liked both Beaumont and Brady and the secondary characters that surround them but felt that it was almost too much for one novel and the plot suffered as result. In order to keep the book at a reasonable length and focus more on the plot some of the parts of the book that had nothing to do with advancing the plot would need to go, such as the part with the neglected elderly patients (although I felt like this was important to the author and she really wanted to make a statement with it). The ending went out with a whimper instead of the bang that I was expecting.
All in all, I enjoyed the book and found it to be relatively clean despite the unfortunate acronym for Beaumont's team. There was some violence that was rather disturbing as well. Rated PG-16 for the violence.

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